View Full Version : Using Book Designer and/or makelrf.ex to Reformat Sony Reader Books

12-02-2006, 01:50 PM
I have a problem that I think is shared by many new Sony reader owners. I am trying to reformat ebooks for the Sony Reader. Almost totally confused. I hope that forum experts & non-experts, who have found good solutions, will contribute in reply to my post. I recognize I hope for alot.

Please excuse any lack of clarity. I DID searches in the forum for the answers. The forum has been very helpful. The search results are: I am beginning to understand the sw tools that might be used to convert ebooks from TXT, PDF or HTML. I have not yet been successful in converting most ebooks to be well formated for the SONY.

I have tried both BookDesigner 4.0 and Makelrf. Also have used Acrobat 7.0 and MS Word XP.

I still seem to either get (a)type to small to read on the Sony or (b) books where the text is a full line followed by a partial line. Here is an example of the CR/layout issue:

The quick brown fox ran after the not so quick yellow dog who had foaming
from the mouth
and thus may of had rabies. The dog's owner was in full panic mode after
losing a previous pet to
similar circumstances last summer.

I think that part of the problem may be the books that I start with are text(TXT) formats, or are HTML (for BookDesigner) formats that when converted have hard CR's.

I also sometimes start with a PDF file that is too faint(very puzzled with this) or too small to read with the Sony. I have read most of the discussion on this board about the PDF issue. I thus tried to use Acrobat 7.0 to convert those files to RTF or Plain text (TXT) when PDF security permits. I have tried using Acrobat to print to an Adobe PDF or Primopdf "pseudo" printer with a page defined as 5.24" x 6.69" (where PDF security allows only printing).

Question: Can anyone SUGGEST work flows and software settings using source files of TXT. HTML, or PDF(both no security and print only security)? Which font should be used (size?, bolding?)? When using or generating txt or RTF is possible, what EDITING should be done in MS Word to modify CR's, paragraph and LF's? When should such editing be done?

I imagine that responses to the above could be a huge resource to other beginning Sony Reader users who need to reformat ebooks.

12-02-2006, 05:29 PM
Welcome to MobileRead.

There are lots of great people here that have a lot of knowledge and love to share what they know. They have helped me a lot in the little time I have had a SOny Reader. I am sure that they will do the same for you.

I have found that the best format for me with text files on the Sony Reader is RTF (Rich Format Text.) You are correct that the full line followed by a short line on the Reader when using text files is a result of hard CRs in the document. In another thread there is a Word Macro ( that will remove the hard CRs within a paragraph, set the font to the correct size (I favor 16 point, many like 14 point), and remove extra spaces. It also allows you to maintain the two spaces after a sentance if that is to your liking. (I am one that likes only one space after a sentance.)

The PDF problem is well documented in many threads throughout MobileRead and others may be able to guide you better than I can as I have not played around with this aspect as I am quite happy with the results of the RTF method and have not yet moved beyond that.

12-03-2006, 01:17 PM
An alternative to MS Word is (, which has the advantage of being free. There is a pre-packaged Open Office approach (with documentation) available for download in Formatting Gutenberg txt Files (